Table of Contents

Hazards of Mining Item-Level Data

Mining item-level data is a rich source of information, but it can also be hazardous. The following rescue strategies can be used when faced with mining hazards (Love et al. 2008):

 


 

Hazard

Rescue Strategies

GIGO (Garbage In, Garbage Out). Poorly written items will result in inaccurate analyses and conclusions.

Deconstruct items to reveal confusing, unfair, or otherwise poor quality items that can be improved or thrown out.

Educators may lack sufficient content knowledge to deconstruct items.

Consult with content area experts for assistance.

“Analysis Paralysis” can set in when educators are faced with an avalanche of data.

Begin with looking for patterns of student needs in group data to prioritize the analysis. Then, dig deeper by looking at individual student data to determine which students need what instruction, support, or intervention.

Keep the focus on answering the ultimate question–What are the specific skills, knowledge, and concepts that are most important and most in need of improvement?